Sankarea 12 – The ending and the beginning


Sankarea has been a fascinating series, one that has had excellent episodes and story arcs, while also unfortunately having a few places where the plot as meandered and not gone very far. As a series it has largely focussed on the private family life that Rea has tried to escape from, and how her father has attempted to control everything about her life from the moment she was born. As a story it is as much about loss as it is about discovering new things and living through new and exciting experiences. The central irony of the story is that Rea must become the most unnatural girl possible in order to live the life of a normal girl. Her family life and the constant presence of her father have shut her off from the outside world, isolating her from everything that could be considered to be normal. While the boys at Chihiro’s school may talk about her as being the perfect ‘oujo-sama’, that is little more than an a mask, something that was in part created by her everyday existence as a Sanka. Read more of this post

Sankarea 11 – Misunderstandings and Reinterpretations


One of the central premises of Sankarea has been the ever-controlling presence of Danichirou, a person who cannot, and will not let Rea live a normal life. At first there is the implication, albeit a small one of incestuous feelings for his daughter, however, over the course of this series we have gradually learnt that this is not the case. To Danichirou, his love for Rea is not incestuous, and yet it is not entirely natural, as if he is mixing up his feelings and desires. Many may consider him to be a sick and twisted individual, and in some respects he is, but at the same time, Danichirou is a tragic character, a product of a deeply damaging family. His love for Rea is a product of his deep love for her mother, the first, and perhaps only person who ever showed real emotions around him, ignoring his family background and treating him like a human. Read more of this post

Sankarea 08 – Living the life of a normal girl?


One of the desires that Rea has made abundantly clear over the course of this series is her wish to be capable of living life as a normal girl, being able to go shopping with friends and enjoying those little things in life that her father had denied her. Her first meeting with Chihiro happened when she was trying escape from her father, her screaming down the abandoned well can be viewed as a way of releasing stress, getting her feelings, her fears and her anxieties out in the open. It is in a sense a way with which she can push her feelings into something else, an empty void that will swallow up all the problems in her life. But at the same time, there was an empty quality in this since she returned night after night; there was no end to her torment, her fears and her anxieties. Read more of this post

Sankarea 07 – The other side


Ranko is a character that has been underused for the majority of the first half of this series, or at least has not featured quite as prominently as Rea. For the most part the reasons for this are obvious, the series itself is centred on Rea and her relationship with Chihiro as a zombie, however, and Ranko has been there to provide some much needed drama and a change of direction when necessary. She is a fascinating character, strong willed, but also very shy and almost incapable of telling Chihiro how she feels about him. She is the character who understands Chihiro the best, having met him and been with him for many years, and this episode provided some interesting flashbacks into their lives together. Read more of this post

Sankarea 06 – The bare necessities of life is all you need


One of the intriguing things about Sankarea is Chihiro’s zombie fetish, or more accurately, how his zombie fetish isn’t as bad as some people may think. At first we are shown quite explicitly that Chihiro wants a zombie girlfriend, and that he doesn’t seem to view normal humans as worth him time. But over the past six episodes it has become clear that while Chihiro may have an obsession with zombies, that isn’t all there is to his life. He has a family that he cares about greatly, and of course there is Rea, someone who he has grown attached to over the course of the series so far. Chihiro cares for Rea and for her health and safety not necessarily because she is now a zombie, but because he has seen a girl who is deeply hurt and scarred by her family life. She had nowhere else to go, and perhaps Chihiro feels responsible for her turning into a zombie, as demonstrated by his narration during the beginning of the series. Read more of this post

Sankarea 04 – That which does not kill us makes us stronger


This week further demonstrated how fractured the Sanka house truly is, one that, while large, is bereft of life or warmth. We further saw the complicated relationship that Rea and Chihiro have, along with the curious notion that Rea had to die in order to live the life of a ’normal’ girl. This further demonstrates the irony of Rea’s life, that she comes from a wealthy family, and yet has to die and move into a temple house in order to experience love, friendship, and a family life that has until now, been missing from her everyday life. Her freedom from the Sanka house came at a high cost, and while she may have come back to life as a zombie, Rea now has to contend with new problems. Read more of this post

Sankarea 03 – Death becomes her


There is a surreal irony in Sanka Rea’s life; that she comes from a wealthy family, has had a privileged childhood in many ways, and due to her looks, status and abilities is viewed as a true ‘ojou-sama’. And yet, she is miserable, cursing her life, cursing her family and viewing death as her only escape; it is this juxtaposition between the realities of her life and what her social status is mean to portray that make her such a fascinating character. Especially with regards to Chihiro, and to a lesser extent Ranko, neither of whom are from privileged backgrounds, and yet, both of them to enjoy themselves while living life to its fullest. Read more of this post

Sankarea 02 – nowhere to run, nowhere to hide


Usually stories involving zombies focuses on what would happen if a plague of them were set loose on the earth, with films looking at how a small group of survivors tries to deal with such a situation, while their world is turned upside down. Zombie films, and the few series that have involved them are generally dull, relying on large gunfights, and lots of general eating of humans. Sankrea however does not do this, and instead takes quite an interesting approach towards the whole zombies set loose on the earth concept.   Read more of this post

Sankarea First Impressions – Cats, zombies and crazy grandparents


It appears that anime’s fetishization of zombies and all things supernatural has continued this season, with a significant number of series involving zombies and ghosts. Adapted from the manga of the same name, Sankarea tells the story of Furuya Chihiro, who openly admits to being in love with zombies, so in love that he can only see himself having a zombie girlfriend. Quite a unique take on life really, and does somewhat limit him in terms of potential girlfriends and possible wives for the future of course. Now, I have read the manga and thoroughly it – it is not exactly unique or a work of genius, however the characters are likeable and the story is quite an interesting one. Read more of this post

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